Beneath all the weirdness is actually quite a compelling package.
Ever thought your Proton X70 SUV could be just a bit more utilitarian? Envious of all your other macho pickup driving friends while in your cushy SUV? Have you completely taken leave of all your stylistic senses? If you answer yes to all three of these questions, then the Farizon FX could be the car/pickup truck thing for you.
Produced by Farizon Auto, Geely’s commercial vehicle arm that specialises in heavy duty lorries, the FX is touted by Geely as China’s first passenger car-based pickup truck. In other words, the FX is also just a Geely Boyue Pro SUV (also known as the Proton X70 locally) with a pickup bed tacked on to the back of it.
On the aesthetics front, different front grille aside, there is not much difference between the Boyue Pro and the FX in the first 80%. That is because it is essentially the same car. The rear 20% however is where the funkiness begins.
To be clear, the pickup bed ain’t the problem. It might be a little small, but styling-wise it is just like any other pickup bed. From the rear especially, rectangular tail lights flank a plain-looking tailgate design with the words ‘Geely’ stamped on the bottom third. The problem with the design of the Farizon FX however lies in the mating of the SUV part and the pickup part.
It is worth noting at this point then that the pickup bed of the FX is tacked ON to the back of this SUV, and not in place of the cargo area of the Boyue Pro. Thus contributing to the ungainly aesthetics of the Farizon FX, especially from its side profile. To those with a memory of ugly pickups, one look at this thing might bring back flashbacks of the equally ungainly Ssangyong Musso.
Moreover, due to this odd choice of bed integration on this SUV-pickup, the bed dimensions isn’t exactly on par with any of its competition. Measuring in at only 1,125 mm by 1,230 mm by 460 mm, as compared to an equivalent Hilux’s bed dimensions of 2,315 mm by 1,520 mm by 450 mm. The bed on the FX however is lined with teak, much like on the deck of a yacht. Which then further renders the bed useless for carrying items in the back.
That said however, being essentially a Geely/Proton underneath, there are some redeeming qualities to this interesting-looking and impractical pickup truck. For one, due to its unibody SUV construction, the Farizon FX will probably be quite a comfy riding pickup truck.
Presumably powered by the same 184 PS/300 Nm 1.8 litre turbocharged petrol four cylinder, the Farizon FX will probably also be a refined pickup to drive. While it may not have the mountain of torque like all of its other diesel-powered competitors, but it doesn’t have the diesel clatter too.
Furthermore with an SUV interior, the FX easily crushes the opposition in terms of interior design and quality. Judging from the standard kit available in the X70, the features on the FX will be also class leading. Add to that the fact that the passenger compartment was not touched during this hack-job, it would stand to reason that this SUV-pickup will probably have best-in-class rear passenger space.
So while it might have the look of something that only its own mother could love, underneath it all is actually quite a compelling package. Especially to those looking to live the macho pickup lifestyle, but don’t feel like having any of the utilitarian drawbacks of living with a pickup in the city.
Priced at 126,900 (RM 78,600) to 136,900 yuan (RM 84,800), the Farizon FX is slated to be a China-only product at the moment. Then again, there is no reason as to why Proton can’t build these SUV-pickups here. Perhaps this could even spell the rebirth of the Wira-based Proton Arena?